Pumped-up project

East Austin's new Riverside development would be double the size of Domain

East Austin's Riverside development would be double the size of Domain

River Park Riverside drive project
A previous rendering of the mixed-used development.  Courtesy rendering

A project nicknamed “The Domain on Riverside” is now on steroids. Developers of the newly rebranded River Park mixed-use development in Southeast Austin have expanded the size to 109 acres and more than 10 million square feet.

In October 2019, the Austin City Council approved rezoning 97 acres for the project — previously known as 4700 East Riverside — over objections from critics, including the Defend Our Hoodz group. Opponents complained that the development would contribute to even more gentrification along the East Riverside Drive corridor.

Developers of River Park have now tacked on the 12-acre Parke Green retail center, at 1717 S. Pleasant Valley Rd., to the project’s site and have plotted more than 10 million square feet of space. The previous plan for the project envisioned well over 5 million square feet of space.

At over 10 million square feet, River Park would be double the current size of the Domain mixed-use complex in North Austin. Several apartment complexes and the retail center would need to be bulldozed to make way for the project.

The developers, Texas-based real estate investment firm Presidium and Swiss private equity firm Partners Group, expect River Park to be completed in 10 to 20 years at a potential cost of more than $4 billion. They initially will develop a 15-acre portion along the southeastern swath of the site. Austin-based investment firm Nimes Capital is no longer involved in the development.

The project will feature office, residential, retail, restaurant, hotel, and entertainment space, but details about those components aren’t available. At least 400 apartments geared toward affordable housing are set to be included, along with about 30 acres of publicly accessible green space.

The River Park site is directly east of the headquarters of software giant Oracle. On December 11, Oracle announced it had moved its main office from Silicon Valley to Austin. The River Park land is bounded by Roy G. Guerrero Colorado River Metro Park, East Riverside Drive, Pleasant Valley Road, and Country Club Creek.

“The location and size of River Park provide a unique opportunity to solve and address some of Austin’s biggest challenges such as housing supply, affordability, connectivity and mobility — all on an urban infill site within five minutes of downtown,” Michael Piano, director of development at Presidium, says in a December 21 release.